On Time’s Cover

New ‘Stro pitcher Gerrit Cole will wear the number 45. Who wore the number 45 for the ‘Stros from 2007-2012?

Commentary is not going to let Amazon define who we are here in the H-Town region. Here is a kind of dumb statement in today’s Chron on not making the Amazon expansion list:

“We’re not behaving like a large metropolitan city,” said Ed Egan, director of the McNair Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Rice University. “Growth is happening in technology. Oil is crucial, but we need to be able to diversify and be a part of America’s future.”

Here is the entire article: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/business/article/Houston-misses-Amazon-s-cut-Work-to-do-say-12509056.php.

What do you mean we are not behaving like a large metropolitan city?

Somebody tweeted yesterday that it was the Harvey flooding factor that knocked us off of the Amazon shortlist. We learned post-Harvey that our old approaches to planning, developing and building were major contributors to flooding and hopefully we are changing our ways.

Harvey has our elected leaders asking for relief funds from our state and federal governments because right now Harvey has put a major dent in our local governments’ pocketbooks. So, it would be political suicide for our leaders to give away tax and other incentives to the richest guy in the world. I think the Amazon folks know that. They were not going to be able to extract much in incentives from us right now.

We also need to start getting serious about traffic congestion and a mass transit system that more folks utilize.

All major urban areas in the USA have issues and challenges. Heck, Seattle lost their NBA team about 10 years ago and yes, to Oklahoma City. Oklahoma City? Don’t give me this gibberish about us not behaving like a large metropolitan city. That’s kind of silly.

We are a great metropolitan city, but all metropolitan cities have issues and challenges. One of ours just happened to be one of the biggest stories of the year last year. Bad timing, I guess.

Our Dem candidate for Harris County Judge, Lina Hidalgo, was among a group of female candidates who landed on the cover of Time Magazine yesterday. Has Hunker Down ever been on Time’s cover. Here is an internet story on the cover:

The new Time magazine cover features the portraits of first-time female candidates who say they were inspired to run for office by the Women’s March one year ago.

The cover story, “The Avengers,” by Time correspondent Charlotte Alter, highlights individuals and groups that make up the grass-roots movement of women running for office nationwide.

“Call it payback, call it a revolution, call it the Pink Wave, inspired by marchers in their magenta hats, and the activism that followed,” Alter writes.

“There is an unprecedented surge of first-time female candidates, overwhelmingly Democratic, running for offices big and small, from the U.S. Senate and state legislatures to local school boards.”

According to Time, four times as many Democratic women are running for House seats as Republican women, and twice as many Democrats in Senate races.

The cover story notes that while some women interviewed have long been involved in politics, many said they felt they underwent a “metamorphosis” due to President Trump’s election that inspired them to take part.

“In 2016, they were ordinary voters. In 2017, they became activists, spurred by the bitter defeat of the first major female presidential candidate at the hands of a self-described p—y grabber. Now, in 2018, these doctors and mothers and teachers and executives are jumping into the arena and bringing new energy to a Democratic Party sorely in need of fresh faces,” the piece reads.

This Time cover comes weeks after the magazine named “The Silence Breakers,” the women who started the #MeToo movement, as its “Person of the Year,” highlighting another major shift in gender politics in the U.S.

The wave of female candidates has already had an impact on smaller races ahead of the 2018 midterms.

EMILY’s List, a group aimed at supporting Democratic female candidates, said last month that more than 25,000 women have reached out to them expressing interest in running for office in the past year.

The organizers of the Women’s March are marking the one-year anniversary of the event by kicking off a voter registration tour.

Nice job!

Carlos “El Caballo” Lee of course wore the number 45 from 2007-2012.

I just saw this for sale on the ‘Stros website:

For $1999.99: Men’s Houston Astros JH Design Navy 2017 World Series Champions Lambskin Leather Full-Snap Jacket with Leather Logos.

No thanks.


People, Not Policy

Just in! Houston didn’t make the cut to get the Amazon City. We get to keep our dignity.  No telling what we would have had to give up.  We are a great city.  We are Ok without this.

Last season, after how many games did the ‘Stros move into first place in the AL West and stay at first place for the rest of the season?

Keeping this issue front and center is important. The work continues.

Dear Friends,

Texas State Representative Carol Alvarado will convene the Urban Affairs Committee to hear invited testimony as well as public testimony regarding short-term and long-term housing needs and related issues resulting from Hurricane Harvey and associated flooding.

You can watch the hearing live HERE

The Urban Affairs Committee will meet in the Houston City Council Chamber, 2nd Floor, Houston City Hall, 901 Bagby Street, Houston, TX on Thursday, January 18, 2018 at 9:00 AM.

Keep fighting for the folks in need.

Everyone knows that Rep. Alvarado is my client.

Chron columnist Erica Grieder has a column today on the DREAMers. I kind of have a mixed reaction.

Here is a line from the column:

Still, Congress is the legislative branch of the federal government, not the president’s steno pool. The Democrats who defended Obama’s executive overreach on the basis that they felt strongly about the issue could have anticipated the risk that his successor might also have strong feelings, in addition to a pen and a phone.

Here is the entire column: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/columnists/grieder/article/Dreamers-don-t-need-forgiveness-they-need-and-12505979.php.

Commentary doesn’t consider it an overreach to save the lives of DREAMers. I consider it humane and decisive action.

I am glad that Grieder addresses the DREAMers, but in reading the column it at times sounds like we are discussing public policy and process rather than people, human beings and folks like you and me who believe and love the same things you and I do. The DREAMers are not they, the DREAMers are us. Got it?

Commentary doesn’t like to make fun of how much folks weigh. Dealing with how much you weigh can be a struggle. I have a scale by my bathroom that I get on daily.

Donald Trump says he is 6’3” and weighs 239 pounds. Come on, dude! It deservedly set twitter on fire yesterday and here is an example:

Dori Longino‏ @dorichats 3h3 hours ago


Mike Trout is 6’2” & 235 pounds

Albert Pujols is 6’3″ and 240 pounds

Tim Tebow is 6′ 3″ and weighs 245 pounds

Let me add:

#SpingerDinger is 6’3”, 232 pounds

‘Stros catcher Brian McCann is 6’3”, 235 pounds

Steve Houston sent me the following on the Houston Firefighters versus Sen. Joan Huffman:

It’s interesting to see the Chronicle make Kristin Tassin sound almost like a credible challenger due to the massive donation of special interest money from HFD. They donated $25k out of Ms. Tassin’s $90k as payback against State Senator Huffman for her support of pension reform. Missing from the article is Senator Huffman’s campaign warchest of over half a million dollars or the strength of her incumbency. Short of a miracle, I’m filing this one under wishful thinking by the reporter.

After our 7-2 win over the A’s in Oakland in our 11th game of the season to go to 7 and 4 did the ‘Stros take over the top spot in the AL West and stayed there for the rest of the season of course.

The team asked me yesterday if I wanted my tickets printed this season at $125 per seat. Nope, I am used to using my phone gizmo. I do hope they send me real tickets for Opening Day like they did last season





Pants on Fire

Craig Biggio played in 2,850 regular season games in his career and that’s 16th best all time. How many times did Biggio play in all 162 games of the regular season?

Local first responders and municipal, county, and state workers deserve props for their efforts the past few days. Let me add the TV and other newsies out there who have been letting us know where and what to avoid. Nice job, folks!

And on this freezing day, it is nice to see Pulitzer Prize winning columnist Lisa Falkenberg of the Chron call out Gov. Greg Abbott for telling a big fat lie. He is trying so hard to be a Donald Trump wannabee. Here are bits from Falkenberg today:

If someone is being petty here, it’s Abbott. The governor, who is many things but usually somewhat dignified in his delivery and strategy, appears to have sacrificed honesty for political gain.

And this:

In a Republican purity contest, she will sometimes fail because her voters understand that issues are complex, require rational thought and compromise to solve – not mere obedience.

Here is the entire column: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/columnists/falkenberg/article/Abbott-owes-an-apology-to-Houston-Republican-12502846.php.

Liar, liar, pants on fire.

Of course, Commentary has been using the purity term for weeks now. In fact, here is from last week:

I know why Gov. Greg Abbott has endorsed State Rep. Sarah Davis’ GOP opponent. What’s up with Abbott endorsing State Rep. Wayne Faircloth’s GOP opponent? Party purity, baby!

I said it first.

And here is another from the Chron on GOP races:

AUSTIN — A Houston Republican is starting to pay a hefty price as she runs for re-election for running afoul with police and firefighter unions in Texas.

In the last to Legislature sessions, State Sen. Joan Huffman has sponsored legislation to make it harder for many public worker unions to collect membership dues. Now those groups are responding by funneling big money to help Fort Bend County Republican Kristin Tassin challenge Huffman in a primary on March 6 in one of the mostly hotly contested state Senate races in Texas.

Of the $90,000 Tassin has raised for her campaign, $27,000 has come from firefighter unions, most notably $25,000 from Houston Fire Fighters Political Action Fund – Tassin’s largest donation.

“Our membership was not too pleased with Sen. Huffman,” said Brian Wilcox, communications director for the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association.

She’s also collected $1,000 each from the Corpus Christi Firefighters Association and from the Texas State Association of Fire Fighters PAC.

Here is the entire read: https://www.chron.com/news/politics/texas/article/Firefighters-aim-to-make-state-senator-pay-12502632.php.

Remember when Steve Bannon used to be badass? I don’t.

Craig Biggio played all 162 regular season games in three different seasons of course – 1992, 1996 and 1997.

They will be introducing our new starting pitcher at The Yard today.


It’s too cold to have an MLB question – just saying.

Folks know that Commentary worked to get NAFTA adopted way back in the early 1990s. I think it has worked well for Texas and the H-Town region. I find it puzzling why Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick are not more outspoken in defending NAFTA these days. Donald Trump isn’t looking out for the interests of Texas when he threatens to scrap NAFTA so why are Abbott and Patrick silent. Are they Trump’s lapdogs? Lousy leadership in my book.

Here is from a Chron story today:

WASHINGTON – Negotiations between the United States, Canada and Mexico aimed at revising the North American Free Trade Agreement are scheduled to resume next week, but recent developments are adding to worries — perhaps nowhere more than in Texas — that the talks and the treaty will unravel, disrupting economic connections built over a quarter-century.

Even as trade specialists note that such negotiations are complex, difficult and subject to stops, starts and posturing, recent statements and actions are stoking concerns among some political and business leaders that prospects for a deal are deteriorating.

Last week, Canadian officials speaking on conditions of anonymity told wire services that the odds of President Donald Trump withdrawing the United States from NAFTA were rising, while Trump himself, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, reiterated his threat to pull out if he can’t win more favorable terms.

Here is the entire story: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/business/article/Fears-of-U-S-withdrawal-rise-as-NAFTA-talks-drag-12493196.php.

I will give Hunker Down credit when credit is due, and he gets credit for slapping Gov. Greg Abbott on opposing Rep. Sarah Davis. This is from the Chron:

AUSTIN — Saying Gov. Greg Abbott “picked the wrong issue,” Republican Harris County Judge Ed Emmett on Monday told Quorum Report the governor “has lost all focus when it comes to Sarah Davis’ race.”

Abbott reportedly said during a fundraiser for Chair Davis’ GOP challenger, Susanna Dokupil, the incumbent tried to pass a bill last year that would have made it much harder for the state to respond to Hurricane Harvey.

“Just a month before Hurricane Harvey hit Houston, Texas, she engineered an effort to convince the Texas House of Representatives to cut [$70 million] of the Texas Disaster Relief Fund,” He added: “Now, fortunately, the Senate was wise enough not to go along with her. But, imagine where we would have been had … Sarah Davis’ wisdom had prevailed.” Abbott’s campaign has not commented.

“It’s almost laughable,” Emmett said, reacting on Monday morning. “His statement is just factually wrong.”

Judge Emmett, a popular Republican in Houston, questioned why the governor has taken this line of attack.”Is this similar to when he called out the state guard on Jade Helm?” Emmett asked. “Is it similar to when he called for all of us to evacuate Harris County and caused all kinds of trouble?” Emmett said.He was referring to Abbott’s public comments calling on people to leave Houston ahead of last year’s monster storm, directly contradicting local emergency management.

Judge Emmett noted Davis is his representative in Austin and said the governor’s use of a natural disaster as a political football like this is unthinkable.

Nice job, Hunker Down.

Here we go again. From the Chron:

Houston Community College trustees will consider censuring their most outspoken colleague at Thursday’s board meeting, alleging he violated the board’s code of conduct.

In the last six months, board member David Wilson has paid an outside investigator to probe the college, accused a colleague of violating board rules by casting a vote remotely, and accused another colleague of not living in her district.

Board chair Eva Loredo is scheduled to present the agenda item accusing Wilson of violating the code on Thursday.

She has criticized Wilson’s investigation and his residency allegations in the past, but she declined to comment on what specifically prompted the censure vote — besides saying that there are “several things” — when reached by phone Monday.

Trustees will discuss the item in closed session before a public vote, Loredo said. “We have some due diligence we need to do,” she said.

Here is the entire read:  http://www.houstonchronicle.com/local/education/campus-chronicles/article/HCC-s-Dave-Wilson-faces-censure-reprimand-Thursday-12498083.php.

Sigh, sigh, sigh.

Former ‘Stro pitcher Joe Musgrove is all class.   The World Series Champions traded away our Game 5 winner and here is what he has to say:

“The initial impact was kind of tough for me, and I think the emotion and the excitement of coming right out of FanFest and getting hit with the news right after was what ultimately made it the toughest thing to swallow.

“But I’m really excited to go to Pittsburgh. It’s a good opportunity for me to continue to develop as a pitcher and to get back into the starting rotation.

“I’ll never forget the time that I spent (with the Astros), and I was treated really well. I learned a lot. I was able to win a World Series, which is more than most people can say. I’m really grateful for the opportunity to play. It’s not very often you get to play on a team of that caliber and have that many studs on one team.

“… In 10 years you’re going to look around the league and be surprised that all these guys were on the same team at the same time. I was really fortunate and happy to be able to be part of that.

“From top to bottom, this organization treated my family and I with the highest level of respect. The Houston Strong will always have a special place in my heart.”


That’s all I have from The Yard.

The Latino Vote, Again

Who would have ever thought that we would be celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr. Day while a racist was living at the White House.

Local labor sent me a note yesterday about a Texas CD 7 Dem Primary candidate and I guess they want me to give it a mention, so I will give it a mention. Here is what they sent me:

January 14, 2018

Subject: Labor request to not back Milasincic for HD 138 / Pannill Fletcher for CD 7

Dear Precinct Chair:

Lizzie Pannill Fletcher is currently running in the Democratic Primary for Congressional District 7. She is a partner in the AZA law firm in Houston, Texas. Adam Milasincic is currently running in the Democratic Primary for Texas House District 138. He is an Associate in that firm.

We believe that progressive voters and organizations should be aware of the work of this firm and these lawyers in undermining the rights and efforts of predominantly immigrant janitorial workers in the city of Houston to unionize, and how their work has contributed substantially to the right wing legislative effort to undermine the ability of workers to come together statewide.

The Texas Gulf Coast Area Labor Federation, AFL-CIO, and the Texas AFL-CIO are asking organizations and voters that care about the rights of workers, immigrants, or women to not endorse or support these two individuals.

The attached letter explains why, after researching the record of these two candidates and screening both of them, we are taking this position and asking progressive voters and organizations to do the same.


Ginny Stogner McDavid

President, Harris County AFL-CIO Labor Assembly

(Former Democratic Party National Delegate in 1996 and 2004; former SDEC Committeewoman from SD 17 2002-2004)

I don’t think I have met Lizzie Fletcher, but she does have the endorsement of EMILY’s List and Houston Mayor Pro Tem and City Coucilmember Ellen Cohen both of whom I respect. She has some other great Dems supporting her, some that I know.  Well this one will get more interesting for sure.

Joe Musgrove is no longer a ‘Stro pitcher. How many games did he get into during the 2017 World Series?

It was widely reported on this past Thursday afternoon that Donald Trump dropped the “shithole” bomb.   His folks didn’t deny it late that afternoon. The talking heads on cable news that evening feasted on the bomb. Trump called his buddies that night to get their take on his racial slur.

The next day, two GOP U.S. Senators who were in the room when Trump dropped the slur said they didn’t recall hearing the slur. Trump then denied using it. Now some of Trump’s backers are saying the slur wasn’t dropped.

Sorry, pals. He used it. I wish the credible news organizations would just have on their programs the talking heads that acknowledge the “shithole” slur was used.

The Chron’s front page yesterday had a story on the Latino vote in Texas and here is how it starts:

DALLAS — Josie Zamora, 44, born in Mexico and a legal resident of Texas for nearly 15 years, says she can feel the building pressure.

“You can feel it in the community,” she says in describing her Oak Cliff neighborhood, where many of the families are from the same small towns in Mexico.

First was Donald Trump’s border wall, and the push from politicians to deport all illegal immigrants. Then came the passage in Austin of a Texas ban on sanctuary cities and the calls to deport Dreamers, the young immigrants who were brought into the United States illegally by their undocumented parents.

Last week, when President Trump announced he was ending a protective amnesty program for about 200,000 Salvadorans nationwide, Zamora said she just shook her head.

“We’re Trump’s punching bag,” said the office manager at a Dallas bookkeeping firm. “I try to ignore what he and a lot of his Republicans say. It makes me angry.”

As Democrats look to make gains in Congress and mount a challenge to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott this year, they shouldn’t count on a big Latino vote, despite the backlash to hardline policies and rhetoric of Trump and the GOP on immigrants. It’s more complicated than that.

To succeed, they would have to translate that anger into a surge in Latino voter turnout — something Democrats have predicted for years, but has not materialized. Democrats would also need their predictions to come true that more Latino voters means more votes for them.

How likely is that?

Here is the entire read: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/news/houston-texas/houston/article/Backlash-builds-over-immigration-but-it-s-12495046.php.

Let me remind you what Commentary said 10 days ago after the Chron E-Board had a take on the Latino vote:

Everyone knows what Commentary has been saying over the last couple of decades about the biggest failure of the Texas Democratic Party – its lack of commitment on engaging the Latino voting community. I have been talking about this ad nauseum.   Nothing has happened. Nada. Zilch.   Folks don’t like Commentary because of this.  I have hurt some feelings – I think.

In 2016, we had an increase in Latino voting here in Harris County, but it wasn’t because of anything the local Dem Party was doing. Heck, Dem Judge Kyle Carter was the only candidate to run ads on Telemundo.   DREAMers, news coverage on Telemundo and Univision, and Donald Trump spurred Latino turnout.

And this:

Commentary stopped being frustrated about the lack of a Dem Party effort in the Latino community a while back.   I just lost confidence in the folks who have been running the Texas Democratic Party.  Nothing personal.

Imagine the potential if the Texas Democratic Party were to fully engage the Latino voter with a serious GOTV effort.

Commentary believes that the Latino vote will be a major factor here in Harris County and Texas this November despite the lack of effort and commitment of the Democratic Party. The Latino voter is very concerned with what is happening in regards to the DREAMers, immigration reform and the hate we feel. That may be enough for key Dem victories in some quarters.

Commentary is not going to spend a whole lot of time on this for this simple reason. This time we have a racist in the White House directing much of his racial hatred toward Latinos – pure and simple. That’s a motivator folks.   We have never seen this in my lifetime. That’s a motivator folks.

When yesterday’s Chron E-Board take was first posted Friday evening, I retweeted that I still prefer #HoustonStrong. Oh, well, here is how the take starts:

With apologies in advance to our readers offended by crude language – our president’s language – we hereby raise a Sunday morning toast to “shithole city.” To our city. To Houston, the most diverse city in America.

This thriving, energetic, successful metropolis is comprised of all those black, brown, beige and copper-toned people from those “shithole countries” that so mightily offend Donald Trump’s delicate sensibilities.

Those Haitians, Mexicans, Salvadorans, Hondurans, Middle Easterners, Nigerians – whoever happens to be on Trump’s most recent sh–list – are Houston. They are us.

More than a quarter of the 4 million people who proudly call this sprawling coastal metropolis home were born in some foreign nation. Many originally hailed from places that Trump disdains.

Here is the entire take: http://www.houstonchronicle.com/opinion/editorials/article/Trump-s-sh-list-12494996.php.

Just don’t do a “shithole” logo, please.

Commentary asked this last week:

I know why Gov. Greg Abbott has endorsed State Rep. Sarah Davis’ GOP opponent. What’s up with Abbott endorsing State Rep. Wayne Faircloth’s GOP opponent? Party purity, baby!

Kuffer found out why here from Ross Ramsey at the Trib:

Abbott started the week by endorsing Mayes Middleton, a conservative who until last year served on the board of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, over state Rep. Wayne Faircloth, R-Galveston, who irked the governor’s circle by supporting a ban on “pay for play” gubernatorial appointments of big political donors.

On Briles again and this time from the Chron E-Board:

(Thumbs down) There are literally hundreds of football coaches qualified to draw Xs and Os at the University of Houston. Who did the Cougs choose? A man from Baylor University’s disgraced athletic program who is alleged in a Title IX lawsuit to have told his recruits, “Do you like white women? Because we have a lot of them at BAYLOR and they LOVE football players.” UH signed off on a $400,000 annual salary for Kendal Briles, exactly the wrong message to female student here and in Waco.

They asked for it.

Steve Houston sent this in:

Marc, given those 550 billionaires pay a large percentage of income taxes while about half the 325 million population pay none, any cut in percentages is going to favor those who actually managed to pay into the system. But Oprah as a president is just as crazy as electing a certain real estate developer, neither familiar with the byzantine political structure of running a government body where they can’t just do what they want without regard for checks and balances.

And this:

WRT Darian Ward and her actions, a two week suspension amounts to a $4k financial hit and she still has to deal with the potential criminal aspects of the case that are not controlled by the Mayor. Given the highly partisan nature of politics these days, her credibility as a press secretary really doesn’t matter since supporters of the mayor won’t care and his detractors will consider any of his subordinates the modern equivalent of Baghdad Bob unless they are told what they want to hear.

As the bulk of her double dipping took place during the Parker administration, that administration setting the tone for what was allowed (this matter was from 2016 and the emails from as far back as 10+ years ago), and is outside the statute of limitations for the misdemeanor criminal charge, I find it entirely plausible that Ward had permission to work on her production projects as some insiders have suggested, those projects considered “pro-Houston” and in the city’s interests, the same with her charity work. Applying a strict look at the law, an employee could be found guilty of promoting a charity when asking for co-workers to buy girl scout cookies or “stealing time” when taking calls from home, their bail bond business staff, or any of a myriad of other outside interests. So some of those raising the alarm like this was the smoking gun to ending Turner’s reign in office might want to reconsider the door they are opening.

More troublesome to me is the way the public information request was handled but frankly, anyone that makes such requests on a regular basis from a government agency is VERY likely to have a slew of horror stories how their request was semantically dissected to stymie the true intent of the request or how the “reasonable” cost of the request was greatly exaggerated to stave off inquiries or even how the agency would respond by unleashing a mountain of data to hide what they didn’t want made public. Ask any reporter worth his salt, even the Chronicle staff has been sharing many anecdotes of late on these practices. and you will understand the context of Ward’s transgressions. Yet how many public officials have EVER been held accountable, and this includes GOP appointed folks as well as their counterparts, so this sudden rush to make an example of Ward flies in the face of historical example. Moving forward, I’d love to see the law revisited and improved but neither political party is interested since they enjoy the benefits of all this.

Got it?

Commentary is not going to say much about what is going on with the Texans other than to say if the ‘Stros operated that way, A.J. Hinch would be signed for infinity and beyond.

Joe Musgrove pitched in 4 games during the 2017 World Series and was credited with the win in the epic Game 5 of course.

With the addition this weekend of Gerrit Cole to our starting pitching staff, the baseball experts are now saying we have the best starting rotation in MLB. I am glad the team wants to get better even though I know it is going to cost me more at The Yard for a Saint Arnold.



The Post

Giancarlo Stanton, who played with the Fish last season and is now with the Yankees, hit 59 dingers this past season. Name the other player in MLB history who ended a season with 59 dingers?

This is a fair question to ask GOP candidates this election year. How long are you going to continue to stand with the racist Donald Trump and where is your dignity?

I don’t see how any self-respecting human being can work for Trump.

Racism as we head into the MLK weekend – absolutely disgusting.

Well, at least they cancelled the Arlington parade with Gov. Greg Abbott.

I really don’t like to write about college athletics. Thanks to UH, now the Trib has a take and here is how it starts:

A bid to better their football team’s offense put University of Houston officials on the defensive this past week.

It’s a posture several schools have had to adopt in recent years after announcing they’d hired coaching staff – like UH’s new offensive coordinator Kendal Briles and offensive line coach Randy Clements – who had worked at Baylor University and departed under the cloud of a sexual assault scandal.

Those universities, like UH, have been quick to offer assurances that their hires were carefully vetted, including through conversations with Baylor officials. But their attempts to set minds at ease have been hampered by one major issue: While Baylor has blamed “athletics and football personnel” for much of the scandal, it has never revealed publicly who specifically did what wrong. 

That stance has frustrated lawmakers, activists and other people at the coaches’ old and new schools, and has prompted calls for more transparency from the private Waco university. 

Baylor should “have come forward a long time ago and been very transparent about everything,” said Brenda Tracy, a rape survivor and activist who has spoken about sexual violence with several college football teams. “It feels like people are … trying to move on from what happened at Baylor, and we don’t even know everything that happened there.”  

Here is the entire Trib read: https://www.texastribune.org/2018/01/12/uh-hires-former-baylor-coaches/.


I saw “The Post” last night and all I can say is that I am glad I am a subscriber to the local newspaper.

Ok, I will say more. Meryl Streep gets top billing over Tom Hanks. The movie ending kind of feels like we had just seen the prequel to “All the President’s Men.” In “All the President’s Men”, Jason Robards won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his portrayal of Ben Bradlee. Tom Hanks will for sure get a Best Actor Oscar nomination for his portrayal of Bradlee. I thought Streep’s performance was flawless.

It is a great flick so, go check it out. If you are fake news believer, don’t waste your time.

Babe Ruth of course ended the 1921 season with 59 dingers.

The caravan is in Katy, Missouri City, Sugar Land, and The Woodlands today, and FanFest is tomorrow.


On Briles Again

The Harris County Houston Sports Authority will be holding an event next month to announce H-Town sports stuff like best player and best event. That’s easy. Jose Altuve and Game 5 of the World Series at The Yard.

How long in hours and minutes did Game 5 last?

Commentary has said it before. DACA and immigration reform are core values of the Dem Party – period. Here is a story in Politico today about a debate within the Dem Party on DACA and immigration reform: https://www.politico.com/story/2018/01/11/democrats-daca-dreamers-immigration-mutiny-334454.

The hardliners in the GOP aren’t going to give one inch.   I don’t see the GOP stepping forward with a proposal that we can consider.

The Chron published a Dallas Morning News column today in their hard copy. It is about the hiring of the offensive coordinator for the football program over at UH. I guess the Chron wants to keep the issue alive so here is how the column starts:

By Kevin Sherrington , Staff Columnist Contact Kevin Sherrington on Twitter: @KSherringtonDMN

The morning after one of the most astounding presidential campaigns in our nation’s history, Nick Saban famously claimed he didn’t even realize it had been Election Day. They were “focused on other things” at Alabama, which explains a lot. And not just a football program that flies more flags than the United Nations, either.

Because if the greatest college football coach of this generation and maybe any other actually pays such little attention to the world outside the white lines, how can we expect the wannabes to keep up?

Between you and me, it’s the only way I can explain how Houston’s Major Applewhite hired not just one but two former members of Baylor’s disgraced football staff, and Art Briles remains in the news.

In case you’ve been locked in a film room, too, Applewhite bypassed dozens of less toxic candidates to hire Art’s son, Kendal. Proving it was no clerical error, Applewhite also signed up Randy Clements, another former Baylor assistant.

Meanwhile, the American Football Coaches Association’s executive director reluctantly canceled an appearance this week by Kendal’s dad, who’d volunteered to speak on Title IX policies regarding sexual assaults.

For the record: Scheduling Art Briles to talk about athletes and sexual assault is a little like hiring the builder of the Titanic to discuss ship designs.

Here is the entire column: http://sportsday.dallasnews.com/college-sports/collegesports/2018/01/09/public-will-hold-art-briles-former-baylor-assistants-accountable-coaches-wont?utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_medium=Social&utm_source=Twitter.

Commentary and some very great close friends will be heading to the AMC Downtown this evening to check out “The Post.”

Royko sent this yesterday:

Will Oprah promise to give everyone a new car paid for with new taxes on corporations?

Great idea! Hopefully, by then it will be an electric car. I will certainly deservedly take one. After all, they just gave billionaires millions.

Game 5 lasted 5 hours and 17 minutes of course.

They had a packed house in Pasadena yesterday to see a couple of ‘Stros minor leaguers. Ah, the days of the three consecutive 100 loss seasons are but memories.

The caravans continue today as we deal for another quality starter.